Hard-core gastronomes frequent this Inman Park bistro and food writers lavish praise on it, but its dining room crowds remain disappointingly thin. Y'all are missing out. Robert Phalen is the wild child among Atlanta chefs, and his restless imagination conjures some of the most unlikely but satisfying food in the city. For every seeming oddity (yes, he's been known to make pastrami from beef heart), there are many more lilting creations like celery and apple salad with Parmesan and pistachio vinaigrette, or trout poached in bacon broth with pickled long beans, almonds, and brown butter. Perhaps to tempt the masses, Phalen is now making a killer double-stack cheeseburger he calls "meatstick"; try it from the regular lunch menu or in the evening upon request.
Photo by Joe Martinez